Another Dark Lord Day?

Oh yeah, I volunteered for it.  I didn’t volunteer, I set up my laptop right next to my desktop and loaded the ticket site for Dark Lord Day on both at approximately 11:45am Central Daylight Time.  I frantically hit refresh on both as the minutes approached: 11:56, refresh; 11:57, refresh; 11:59, refresh. 12:00, here we go!

The Facebook brigade was in full force today.  First, Three Floyd’s didn’t post the ticket sales link in their status until 11:57am.  Honestly, if you were on Facebook waiting for that to appear you were not going to secure tickets.  The bevy of comments that ensued spanned from, “I got mine” to “FTS!”  But this is what Three Floyd’s does, this is what it has been doing as of late.

At 12:49pm the Facebook status indicated tickets finally sold out.  Of course, after I secured a pair on the laptop I tried for a pair on the desktop and not a single group had a ticket available.  This was at 12:03pm.  Server problems? Sure.  However, if you didn’t time that refresh just right, you were screwed.

The ticket sales medium that Three Floyd’s has chosen does have issues, but I can’t think of a fairer process, especially now that they are trying to affix the purchaser’s name to the ticket and will be checking identifications at the door.  But the major flaw in this year’s ticket sales was the missing Group A.

Upon entering the screen to buy tickets, any chance at selecting Group A was gone.  I know there are people who bought these tickets online, but the option was never presented to me.  I really didn’t think of it at the time because the brewery does a very good job treating their ownership and VIPs so I just assumed that these tickets were reserved for them.

The ticket distribution system is set up like you’re going to see a concert.  I complain a lot about Three Floyd’s, but in this regard there is no suitable alternative.  If you insulate yourself and just sell tickets to the local patrons you isolate your brand and it might not have become the global phenomenon that it is.  But if you open the availability to the masses, the surest way is selling the tickets like any band performing in concert.  Here’s your chance, good luck!  So you’ve been to 9 DLDs in a row but now your screwed.  Get over yourself.  Heaven forbid you share in your good fortune for nine years and let someone else try a beer that is one of the best in the country.

The one downfall is admittance onto the grounds.  Although I was lucky to get Group B tickets, I know I will be resting on the pavement in the early A.M. that morning because getting into the brewpub is half the battle.  All ticket holders are welcome at 10am, regardless of group.  Last year I had Group A and by the time we made it into the festivities and in line to purchase the beer, we had a half hour left in our buying window.  So this year, more of the same.

I am a seasoned veteran by now and am prepared for all Dark Lord Day entails.  My friends secured their tickets with little hassle as well so it should make for a good post in the future.  I promise I’ll try to be more positive this time around.

If you are reading this, please leave a comment.  I want to know the most outrageous thing you’ve done for a beer (could be dollars spent, distance traveled, etc.).  You must leave a comment with your full first and last name with a valid email address.  The week before DLD (April 21st) I will consult with IndianaBeer staff and we will pick a winner.  The winner will receive their choice of Baller Stout, 2012 Dark Lord, or 2013 Dark Lord.  I know they might not be the rarest beers, but they are the ones I have at my disposal.

8 thoughts on “Another Dark Lord Day?”

  1. not sure if this is the craziest thing I've done for beer, but will tell my Dark Lord Day ticket story. We took a family vacation to Florida this past week, driving straight through with a 3 year old and a 9 month old, which is crazy by itself. I talked my wife into leaving earlier than we planned so that I could be home in time to secure DLD tickets from my home computer. So we left Ft. Myers at 7am saturday morning. The return trip home was riddled with construction. It took us 13 hours to just get to Atlanta. My 3 year old Vomited in the car, which added extra clean up time. My 9 month old became brain fried. It was apparent that we needed to stop for the night. So we got a hotel. I then tried to figure out how could I possibly get DLD tickets. We resumed traveling in the morning and around 12:30 (eastern time) I found a McDonalds somewhere between Nashville and Louisville. Bear in mind we had been traveling now for nearly 30 hours….wife not really pleased that I was stopping, but I was committed to getting DLD tickets. So we stopped. I had to set up my computer on the floor in the playplace and I was ready to go. I was able to get through easily on the site but got held up in the captcha. I typed the letters correctly, using case sensitive characters, and multiple times it failed…I felt my tickets slipping away. Which inevitably happened. I struck out. But moments later my sister called me and told me that she had secured tickets and that I would get to be her guest. We are going to be in group B this year, and I am pumped to be making a return trip. We then resumed our trip back home and 36 hours after leaving Florida, I was celebrating being home and getting DLD tickets with some Behemoth….

    Kevin Myers

  2. Is this contest open to anyone over 21, then?…Or must they live within certain shipping parameters?:)…

  3. Kevin, great story! Glad you get to make it and maybe your sister is deserving of the prize!

    Anonymous, I would think over 21 is a given and I will ship this anywhere. Unfortunately, you don't qualify yet.

  4. Aside from traveling from Iowa to Dark Lord Day this year with my girlfriend to buy the full allotment…I would have to say the craziest and most expensive thing I've done for a beer involved acquiring some Surly Wet this past fall. We used to live in the Minneapolis area, so getting Surly used to be no problem. Wet, however, however, was a beer that I had yet to try. In the past year we relocated to the Chicago area,so Surly was no longer available whenever I felt that craving needed to be satisfied.

    Well, we had some friends visiting us from Minneapolis the week after Wet was released. They were flying in…bringing carry on luggage only. I saw this as an opportunity and called and purchased some Wet over the phone, had the friends pick it up, paid for them to have checked luggage both ways. For 3 4packs of Surly Wet, I spent nearly $120, or $10 per can.

    Delicious beer? Absolutely. Incredibly stupid? Absolutely. We'll see how I fare at my first DLD.

    Royce Mahoney

  5. So. I live in Minneapolis, but we make the trip every year for Dark Lord. Lucky enough to have some local friends, so it's all good. Our equivalent festival here is Surly Darkness. They don't sell tickets online, you have to line up, and, you have to be in line by 3:30pm the day before in order to get tickets for the guaranteed beer sales the next day (sales start at noon). So this means camping out overnight in late September in MN (cold), drinking beer for basically 24 hours straight (drunk). It's a great event with lots of drunk people (ha), and then we didn't even get tickets so no beer, after all of the waiting ! Luckily they do sell some in limited release and special tastings in bars, so I did still get the first time we tried. This year, I found out from an insider that if you line up at about 3:30pm the day of the event, they will start selling off any "leftovers". I was able to get 6 bottles, no problem…who knew ?

  6. Good Idea: Taking your bottles out to the car at Dark Lord Day.
    Bad Idea: Taking you bottles out to the car at your "FIRST" Dark Lord Day.

    So being that is was my first DLD, my friends warned me going in to be prepared with plenty of water, snacks, and a few bottles for the ALL DAY bottle sharing. With my two growlers worth of beer, (La Trappe Quad & Duchesse de Bourgogne), I took on the challenge of the day. Sadly, It was a battle I was meant to lose…

    After several hours of sharing, the gates opened and we proceeded into the brewery to obtain our allotment. Coherent enough to purchase, we obtained our 4 bottle allotment and made our way out to the tables to relax and enjoy the guest taps. There I resided for about another hours or two enjoying my fill of various delicious beverages. Here is what my DLD ended though…
    Incoherently, I managed to take 2 of my alloted DL's out to my buddies vehicle. While out there I thought it would be a great idea to sit down in the back seat and just take a load off for a while. Next thing I knew, I woke up in the back seat only thirty minutes from Fort Wayne, Indiana. With my buddy (sober btw) at the wheel, the first questions out of my mouth were "Where the hell are we?, Where are my growlers?, and Where is the rest of my beer?".

    Conclusion to this story is that excessive "sampling" is not always the best idea at a beer event, and pictures are worth a thousand words. Apparently my friend went out to the vehicle 3 hours after I had, to find me passed out. Doors wide open. My DL sitting ontop of me. I was just down a merely 2 DL bottles and 2 growlers (only $80 worth of beer :/ ).I recieved some serious ridicule for passing out the way I did.

    Was definitely a day to remember. If only I could though.. (0_o)/… Managed to track down the growlers later, but told the ones who came in posession of them to just keep them. Never found out where my other DL's went.

    Cheers, Jon Green

  7. Craziest thing I ever did for a beer? Not sure if I would define it as crazy but it was definitely unlikely…

    I'm a big St.Louis Cardinals fan and love going to Milwaukee a few times a year to catch Cards/Brewers games. The fans up there are a blast to be around. Truly professional drinkers. And what makes it even better is that they're drinking delicious New Glarus, Lakefront and Central Waters beers. Can't beat that! Anyways. I went to Brewers Opening Day last year against the Cards and befriended several people in my row. Shot the shit about beer, homebrewing and baseball. I was living the life.

    Turns out this old man who can barely get around is a huuuuge beer fan. As in he goes to all the big beer festivals across the county (Hunaphu Day in Tampa, KBS release, GABF, etc..). We got to talking about Dark Lord and he said that's the one he's never had (tickets selling out so quickly and all). I told him I go virtually every year and could help him out next time I'm up. He liked the sound of that.

    To make a long story short, his son called me a few months back out of the blue and said his dad wanted me to go ice fishing with the 2 of them. I guess his dad wasn't doing real good and held trying a Dark Lord pretty high on his bucket list. So after a few days of trying to explain to my wife the unlikely scenario of driving up to Wisconsin to go ice fishing with an old man and his son whom I met 9 months before (and only hung out with for the duration of a 6-0 Brewers victory), I went up and had a blast. I went ahead and brought all the vintages of Dark Lord I had, shared some beers, caught some fish and had a good time.

    I didn't leave empty-handed either. The old man gave me several vintages of Surly Darkness which I've always wanted to try (but the trading pricetag is always too unreasonable) as well as a Goose Island King Henry.

    Not sure if a story like this applies to what you're looking for but it's a fun story to share no less.


    Mike Cate

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